Everywhere I look I see people using Apple products. They are making calls on iPhones, using iPads on the bus to read books, and then in the office there’s a Macbook or two. You would have thought that the UK government would be earning a huge wodge of tax from Apple on all the products the company has sold in the UK in the last few years.
Actually this is not the case. The Telegraph reports this morning that in 2012 Apple paid absolutely no corporation tax. In fact it even earned a tax credit of £3.8m to carry forward next year.
I am not going to spend ages looking at the intricacies of how it has managed to do this (like 99% of the population I really don’t understand it anyhow) except that according to the Telegraph the company is using share awards to employees to help wipe out the corporation tax liabilities of its UK businesses.
The amount of money Apple is making and the amount of tax it pays is breath taking on both accounts. For one of its three companies that are active in the UK, Apple Retail UK Ltd, it notched up sales of over £1bn in 2012 up until September, yet only showed a pre-tax profit of £16m.
That is not all. The Telegraph says
Another subsidiary, Apple (UK) Ltd, made a pre-tax profit of £43.8m on sales of £93m, according to accounts filed at Companies House, while a third, Apple Europe, made a pre-tax profit of £8m.
However, the company offset tax deductions relating to share schemes of £27.7m against its corporation tax liabilities in the UK.. Experts have also suggested Apple’s total sales in the UK are far higher, as many are logged elsewhere.
So iPhone and iPad owners do you care? A few years back no one would have even bothered about Apple’s tax liabilities,. But with cuts in public spending and welfare really starting to bite the UK there is a growing clamour for companies to at least make an attempt to cough up their share. It obviously isn’t just Apple. Vodafone, Google and Amazon all pay limited amounts of corporation tax and are seemingly legitimate in the way they go about it.
So let us know in the poll question what you think?